Yes, two Lancias on the one list. It’s almost like we’re fans of what they achieved or something, like continually striving to invent, transform and achieve under… let’s say ‘pressure’.
Also, we’re betting that a great many of you haven’t heard of the Trevi Bimotore before. Not surprisingly, given that there was only one prototype that was scuppered faster than you can say ‘We have the great ideas around here, not you’. But it’s probably the best and/or craziest idea any car maker ever had to go rallying. With the series favouring 4WD cars, and Lancia only making FWD transaxle cars… you see where we’re going. Or rather, where certifiable mad genius Giorgio Pianta comes in. He was pivotal in the development of the Fiat 131 Abarth, Lancia 037 Rallye and S4 Group B cars, as well as the Alfa 75 that took the DTM and BTCC crowns back in the Nineties. But in the midst of those renowned achievements is a largely forgotten one: a 4WD Lancia Trevi, thanks to a complete engine and transaxle setup on both the front and rear axles.
Somehow, a single gear stick controls both the fore and aft gearboxes, and there are two separate odometers to keep tabs on what both engines are doing. Oh, and separate starter buttons, which is just awesome.
Each engine was the ‘Volumex’ spec, Lancia’s name for the 2.0-litre twin cam model fitted with a twin-lobe supercharger. So the Trevi Bimotore also gets to play the ‘twin-supercharged’ card, which automatically wins every card-based game. Each engine was good for 135bhp (it was a standard road engine from the Eighties, after all), but working in tandem, that’s 270bhp of boxy Eighties Lancia.
Yes, Lancia went another way, and no, we’re absolutely not sad about the Delta S4 that got the corporate sign-off, or the amazing transformation of the regular Delta from VW Golf rival to epoch-busting rally car when Group B was finally put to bed. We just thought you’d like to know that, somewhere in Italy, there’s a twin-engined Lancia with more pedigree than your average Crufts.